Words of Mass Destruction: Hold Your Tongue

When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise. The tongue of the righteous is choice silver, but the heart of the wicked is of little value. The lips of the righteous nourish many, but fools die for lack of judgment.

Proverbs 10:19-21

Words of Mass Destruction: Hold Your Tongue

“Don’t press send.” That is the advice Herm Edwards, former NFL football player and coach, first gave to NFL rookies in 2011. He told them that if, in a moment of heightened emotion, they feel the need to tweet something inappropriate, mean, stupid, or controversial, to pause a second and “don’t press send.” Coach Edwards’ advice echoes the advice of Solomon. It is often good for you to hold your tongue or not press send because many words and much posting on social media greatly raises the chance of sinning with your lips and your typing fingers.

God wants you to hold your tongue so you can listen with your ears (that whole one mouth, two ears thing). Hold your tongue and listen to the words of God. Open your ears and hear him tell you how your words have been sinful. Open your ears and hear him tell you words of forgiveness, that in Christ your sins have been taken away. And then, open your ears and hear what others are actually saying to you. Hold your tongue and listen to them.

And when you do open your ears to listen to God and to the real needs of others, then your words will be valuable to others. When you speak, your conversation will be full of grace because you have filled your ears with God’s words of grace to you. When you are fed with words of life from God, you will speak life-giving words—words that are food for thought and food for their souls.

Prayer: Dear Lord, open now my heart to hear. Help me to listen to your words of love for me that I might hold my tongue and in love listen to others. Guide me in my words to others that those words might be spoken in love and be of value to them in their lives of faith. Amen.